mark4media – the home of New Wine FM

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Terry Thring in the studio during the first New Wine Radio broadcast in 1994 (Terry Thring)

Jean Thring in what would become the studio in our first location on the Shepton Mallet site (Terry Thring)

In our subsequent studio at Shepton Mallet is the band ‘Trinity’, live on-air during 2013 (Richard Graham)

An outside broadcast from a New Wine Evening Celebration taking place in 2009. (Richard Graham)

Vicki Sharkey does a live interview in the Tearfund Cafe at New Wine 2010. (Terry Thring)

Presenters Candy and Sally in our Shepton Mallet studio during United 18 (Mark Hughes)

Live worship from the Arena at United 18 in Shepton (Mark Hughes)

How it all began

In 1994, an RSL radio station was created to serve the New Wine Christian conference. Since then, the station has been a staple part of the New Wine experience, broadcasting live from the main meetings of the conference, as well as selected seminars across the day and with a great selection of music and interviews.

Why mark4media – what’s in a name

The name ‘mark4media’ comes from Chapter 4 of the Gospel of Mark. The scriptures in Mark 4 contain three parables about seeds all of them are relevant to our mission and well worth a read.

The word ‘broadcast’ is defined as ‘scattering seed over a large area’. That’s what we do: scatter seed through the radio ‘broadcasts’.

Before mark4media – where it all began

In the beginning there was Terry Thring. Terry become a Christian when alone in a local hospital radio studio. The testimonies of Christians that he had interviewed on the radio challenged him to become like them. Terry was struck that God touched him with His presence through what he saw and heard; listening to Christian music played an important part in this. Terry reasoned that others could experience this too.

This is what motivated Terry to take the plunge along with his wife Jean and get involved in Christian radio broadcasting.

The next step – New Wine Radio

Getting engaged by New Wine to run the radio at New Wine Shepton Mallet for the 1994 event was a huge step. It was Terry and Jean’s hope that God would touch people’s lives through the radio.

Following that first broadcast, several dozen letters and notes from listeners explained how it was the first time that they had been able to turn on their radio at any time during the day, and hear Christian programme. At that time there were no Christian TV or radio stations available in the UK apart from one radio station on satellite.

Broadcasting wider

In 2007, New Wine FM started a partnership with Bournemouth-based Community radio station Hope FM, giving the chance for listeners in the Bournemouth area to hear the live worship and teaching from the main evening celebrations at New Wine. Hope FM also broadcast on the Internet, offering many more lives to be touched by the New Wine ministry. This partnership has continued to this day.

In 2015, New Wine FM trialled broadcasting online for the entire two-week period that the New Wine Summer Gatherings (as they were now called) were taking place. Many people found this encouraging having been unable to attend the event themselves.

The next step

After 19 years of serving New Wine FM at Shepton Mallet, Terry and Jean felt the time had come to hand the baton on to others. The mark4media trust was formed in 2012, when Terry and Jean handed over all the radio equipment into the care of the new trust.

There are 6 trustees. We all see New Wine FM as our ministry, but also plan to take the work forward, all the while keeping to Terry and Jean’s vision of being Christ centred, inspired by the Holy Spirit and our prayer is that God will make His presence known and speak through the broadcasts.

In 2018, New Wine held their final Summer event at the Bath & West Showground at Shepton Mallet, moving to the East of England Showground at Peterborough for United 19, and New Wine FM will be right there, still broadcasting on 87.7fm around the site and local area, and our prayer is that many more people can tune in on FM, as well as online.

Lives touched

Over the 20+ years that New Wine FM has been broadcasting, people have told us how God has touched and motivated them through listening to the radio. Here are just a few of those experiences.

  • An interview about the need for housing in the third world prompted a listener to give a donation large enough to build a house.
  • A person picking up the broadcast while driving past the showground was so touched by hearing about child sacrifice in Africa that he turned around and came on site to sign a petition.
  • A young man wanted to give his life to Jesus after hearing a speaker from the evening celebration, listening in London online through our partnership with Hope FM.

These are just some experiences that listeners have told us about how God has touched people’s lives through listening to New Wine FM. We would love to hear from you as well, please get in touch through the contact page.

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